09/12/2005 12:00AM

Track redevelopment plan sent to city council

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Horsephotos
Lost in the Fog, winning the King's Bishop, is pointing to the Bay Meadows Speed on Oct. 1.

SAN MATEO, Calif. - The San Mateo Planning Commission last week approved a plan by the owners of Bay Meadows to build residential, retail, and office space where the racetrack currently stands. The next step in the long process is approval by the San Mateo City Council, which meets to review the plan Sept. 19.

The track's owners, the Bay Meadows Land Co., intend to eventually tear down the track, but racing will almost certainly be conducted there for at least several more years. According to F. Jack Liebau, the president of Bay Meadows, after the City Council approves the plan, design plans must be reviewed and environmental reports completed. The Planning Commission held more than a dozen hearings on the plan before approving it.

"When I first came here in 1992, Bay Meadows was supposedly going to be redeveloped, and it's still here," Liebau said.

After the design plans are reviewed and environmental reports are completed, the land company would have to determine that building housing and office space is indeed the best use of the property.

"The market has to be there," Liebau said.

Much of the office space built when the old stable area and training track were sold in the 1990's remains unoccupied.

The land company's plans for the 83.5 acres of land include 1,250 residential housing units, 1.25 million square feet of office space, 150,000 square feet of retail space, and 15 acres of open space, including a 12-acre park. The plan originally called for the development to be completed in 20 years, but the Planning Commission suggested that time frame be reduced to 15 years.

Lost in the Fog to Bay Meadows Speed

Lost in the Fog is being pointed to the newly created $100,000 Bay Meadows Speed Handicap here on Oct. 1. Tom Doutrich, Bay Meadows racing secretary, said trainer Greg Gilchrist told him that he intends to run Lost in the Fog in the Bay Meadows Speed, a six-furlong race for 3-year-olds and up, and then ship him to Belmont for the Breeders' Cup Sprint.

Gilchrist's original plan was to either run Lost in the Fog in the Grade 1 Vosburgh at Belmont on Oct. 1 or to simply train up to the Breeders' Cup.

Bay Meadows needed - and received - approval from the Thoroughbred Owners of California to use purse money for the race.

Liebau said it's only appropriate that Lost in the Fog make his final start before the Breeders' Cup in front of his home fans.

"We have a horse that hopefully is going to go on and win the Breeders' Cup," Liebau said. "It's only right that people in northern California see the horse run live. I think it will be a fun day for everyone in northern California and hopefully draw a number of people to the track."

Track now displaying dime super payoffs

So how could there be a $101,126 payoff on a Saturday superfecta at Bay Meadows when the pool was only $63,745? Actually, there wasn't.

In a situation that has played out at other tracks that offer a 10-cent superfecta, the payout was calculated for a $1 ticket. There were 50 cents' worth of winning tickets - five 10-cent bets - and the pool after takeout was $50,563. Each ticketholder received $10,112.60. On Sunday, the track began displaying superfecta payoffs for the 10-cent minimum.

The race was won by Fannie Jo (71-1), followed by Smoke'n Triumph (18-1), Langfuhr's Magic (7-1), and Speak the Language (12-1). The payoff would have been even higher had 17-1 Choice Slew not been disqualified from second to 10th.

* Fannie Jo's $145.80 win payoff Saturday wasn't the biggest of the weekend. Marquee Affair returned $159.80 on Sunday, but with favored Tusko Charlie second and third-choice Cold Market third, that 10-cent superfecta paid only $1,366.50.

* Conveyor's Angel, who won the Golden Poppy Breeders' Cup Handicap at Golden Gate Fields this spring, heads the list of 23 nominees for Saturday's $60,000-added Palo Alto Handicap at 1 1/16 miles on the turf.

* Juste Smile and Gotta Go Gal, runners-up against similar in their most recent starts, head a field of seven in Wednesday's six-furlong allowance feature for fillies and mares.

* Jockey Jorge Ayarza was suspended for five days (Sept. 16-22) by the Bay Meadows stewards for causing interference aboard Odd Testimony in the eighth race Sept. 7. Apprentice Adan Landeros received three days (Sept. 17-21) for causing interference aboard Pinky's Posh in the second race Sept. 9.